I love the unique flavor of Mulligatawny soup: it’s sweet, savory and spicy. It’s a creamy soup that also happens to have texture. Even though a lot of people think that Mulligatawny soup is an Indian recipe, it’s actually not… It’s an Anglo-Indian dish, meaning it has both Indian and English roots.
You might be wondering how THAT happened. I’ll tell you (obviously). Here’s the simplified version of Mulligatawny soup’s complicated past:
Mulligatawny soup started out as an Indian recipe. Mulligatawny is actually a Tamil word that means “pepper-water.” Like the description, this dish was originally a very thin and spicy lentil broth typically served overtop rice. Definitely a far cry from the thick and creamy version you might be used to eating at Indian restaurants.
Back in the day (19th century), when Great Britain ruled over India, the British residents are said to have wanted soup. There wasn’t really a concept of a “soup” course in India before this time, so Indian cooks/servants came up with a heartier version of their “pepper-water” to satisfy the residents.
(Want the full scoop on this soup? I found this interesting research paper about Mulligatawny soup that’s worth a read for those of you who are also weirdly obsessed with the history of food.)
While my Mulligatawny soup clearly isn’t authentic – because um, what is authentic Mulligatawny soup? I can tell you this… my version of Mulligatawny soup is brilliant. It’s flavorful and exciting. It’s sweet and savory and spicy and comforting and all the things that a good soup should be. It’s thickened with vegetables – not lentils – and so it’s legume-free too.
While this is a vegetarian recipe, you can easily add some of my simple shredded chicken to make this a more filling dish.
This is one of the many delicious recipes in my eBook, South Asian Persuasion so if you’re looking for healthy paleo-friendly recipes with a lot of flavor, then be sure to check it out!
- 2 tablespoons ghee
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 medium carrot, diced
- 1 celery rib, diced
- 1 small sweet potato, peeled and diced
- 1 granny smith apple, peeled and diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1-inch piece fresh ginger, minced
- 1 tomato, diced
- 2 teaspoons curry powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- ½ cup coconut milk, canned and full-fat
- Heat ghee in a dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, celery, sweet potato and apple to the pot. Cook for 10 minutes or until softened.
- Add the garlic, ginger and tomato. Mix well, cover the pot with a lid and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add the spices, give the vegetables a stir, then pour in the broth.
- Simmer for 15 minutes then allow the mixture to cool. Pour half of the mixture into a blender, puree then put this back into the pot.
- Add the coconut milk, cook uncovered for 2-3 minutes, then serve.